Art Hounds: Flamenco, sculpture and Indigenous writing

Susana DiPalma of Zorongo Flamenco
Susana Di Palma of Zorongo Flamenco.
Courtesy of Erik Saulitis

Myron Johnson of Minneapolis, former artistic director for Ballet of the Dolls, recommends “The Conference of the Birds” from Zorongo Flamenco Dance Theatre. The dance piece is based on an epic poem by 12th-century Persian mystic Farīd al-DīnʿAṭṭār.

“It’s been performed and created by one of my absolute favorite artists in this community, Susana di Palma,” Johnson said. “I can’t imagine anyone taking this story and doing an interpretation any better than Susana and her live musicians and singers and flamenco dancers and original music.”

“The Conference of the Birds” plays Feb. 10-11 at the Cowles Center in Minneapolis.


Minneapolis resident Mary Thomas is an art historian and arts administrator. She is looking forward to In the Middle of Somewhere,” an exhibit by artist Martin Gonzales.

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An alum of the University of Minnesota’s art department, Gonzales is based in Massachusetts. Thomas sees Gonzales “grappling with questions of how he takes up space and how he can occupy space in different ways.”

“The sculptures are a way to think through and meditate on some of those questions through his own life and his own experience,” Thomas said.

The exhibit is on display at the Silverwood Park Visitor Center in St. Anthony through Feb. 29.


Linda LeGarde Grover, a member of the Bois Forte Band of Chippewa in northern Minnesota, is a professor emeritus of American Indian Studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth. She’s very pleased to recommend the Indigenous Writer Series at AICHO in Duluth.

The series features Indigenous writers from around the region.

“Some of them will actually have drawings for some of their books, and the community will get to listen to them, ask questions of them and especially hear them talking about their writing,” Grover said.

The event Saturday will include authors Tashia Hart of Red Lake Nation and Staci L. Drouillard of Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, from 2-4 p.m. at the Dr. Robert Powless Cultural Center in Duluth.

This activity is made possible in part by the Minnesota Legacy Amendment‘s Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund.